Welcome back to another day of new releases. It’s been a rough last few days so please keep that in mind if and when I get to some of the more chipper albums I review. Happily, there have been a fair amount of beautiful albums whose tones are on thedarker side this week and I’m going to dive head first into them.
Dana Jade — Dana Jade (Self-Released)
Dana Jade comes out swinging with her deliciously rocking debut. This album is packed with heavy bass lines, banshee-like vocal vibrations and a group of songs that ooze the kind of sex appeal that will probably leave you with bruises. This will be a great pocket companion for blasting some of my anger away this week. Ms. Jade has made her songs available to stream over at Soundcloud as well!
Regina Spektor — What We Saw From the Cheap Seats (Sire Records)
The piano-driven melodies Ms. Spektor is known for are just as fanciful, delicate and clean as ever. She paints a complete picture with her words and lets the piano keys fill in the emotional blanks since her vocal cadence sometimes belies the words she sings. Listen to the album in its entirety over at NPR.
Saint Etienne — Words and Music (Heavenly Records)
There’s a whole lot of speak-singing of play-by-play narration this week and I’m not feeling it. The quickest way to lose a new generation of listeners who have the attention span of a – oh look, a shiny thing!
The only more positive notes I can give about Saint Etienne’s take on the speak-singing in album opener “Over The Border” versus Gemma Ray’s song from yesterday, is the Jarvis Cocker sexy swagger of vocalist Sarah Cracknell’s speaking voice, which I actually prefer to the singing on this song. As a whole, it’s not a terrible dance pop album and there are plenty of opportunities for club remixes throughout. As a personal preference, it’s just not all that interesting.
Julia Stone — By The Horns (Nettwerk Productions)
Julia and her brother Angus have decided to pursue solo careers after being a touring duo for the last six-plus years. While she seems to most often be categorized under the Folk umbrella, her songs are filled with melancholy and her voice has a fantastic peculiarity about it which would make her music fit in better with Coco Rosie more than it would most other folk artists.
That’s all I’ve got time for today so I think you can actually expect another round of reviews tomorrow! Feel free to drop me a note, friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter or send me a hug-o-gram.